The highest form of flattery for staff at Vogue is a four-letter word.

Video via Vogue

For most, the thought of being served a four-letter word by Anna Wintour is enough to make you want to bury your head in your Hermès.

But not for employees at Vogue.

According to Vogue.com‘s fashion news director, Chioma Nnadi, the highest form of flattery you can receive at the fashion bible is a small, black scribble across your work that reads: “AWOK”, as in Anna Wintour OK.

“No writer/editor/stylist/art director ever forgets their first AWOK,” wrote Nnadi.

There is, of course, a very strict process in place before you get the nod from the formidable Editor in Cheif, as Nnadi learned when filing her first assignment at the publication.

“Once I’d gotten the green light from my boss, I then had to print out three separate copies of the article,” Nnadi wrote.

“One I gave to the copy editors and fact-checkers, the second to the magazine’s production department, and the third and most important printout I slotted into the inbox by Wintour’s office.”

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Then you wait.

If it’s not an AWOK that comes back on the little yellow sticky note, Nnadi wrote, then it’s likely to be something along the lines of “Keep trying,” “No,” or simply, “Boring”.

“Still, no Post-it will inspire more fear or confusion in the Vogue offices than the dreaded ‘See me.'”

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